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A Covid Odyssey: A Fictional COVID-19 Pandemic Story

A Covid Odyssey: A Fictional COVID-19 Pandemic Story

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A Covid Odyssey: A Fictional COVID-19 Pandemic Story

70 página
1 hora
Jun 22, 2020


A race against time to bring the cure for a deadly virus to a dying spouse.


Although the COVID-19 pandemic is ravaging the world, Dr. Mark Spencer's small town in Northern Ontario is largely unaffected other than being in lockdown and preparing for the potential onslaught. When his wife, Sarah – already attending a conference in Florida when the borders close – becomes deathly ill, she is admitted to a local hospital with minimal resources to treat Covid patients. As she spirals downward and with time running out, Mark concocts a plan to bring her an experimental anti-viral drug that might save her life. He must first, however, cross the Ontario/Michigan border and then travel 2000 km through a pandemic American landscape. Along his journey, he encounters a variety of unusual characters that bring into question the very foundation of his scientific beliefs.

Will Mark arrive at the hospital in time to save his wife? No matter what, Mark's life will be forever changed by his Covid Odyssey.

Jun 22, 2020

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A Covid Odyssey - Graham Elder



I’d like to dedicate this book to all the healthcare workers around the globe who are putting their lives on the line daily, battling this disease. Your selfless sacrifices will echo through time and hopefully make this new, post-pandemic world a better place.

Copyright © 2020 Graham Elder

All Rights Reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in, or introduced into a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form, or by any means (electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise) without prior written permission of the copyright owner and publisher. For the purposes of a reviewer, brief passages may be quoted in a review to be printed in a newspaper, magazine, journal or by digital means.

This book is a work of fiction. The names, characters, businesses, organizations, events, places and incidents are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, events, incidents or locales is coincidental and unintentional.

G.M. Elder Publishing



Printed in Canada

ISBN: 978-0-9958907-3-2 (ebook)

ISBN: 978-0-9958907-4-9 (pbk)


A special thanks to my wife, Andrea, for her encouragement, as well as to my children, Emily and Charles – always the first to read. A further thanks to my writing partner and old friend, Laura Cody – let the learning continue. A final thanks to author Cynthia Clement – for her detailed knowledge of the publishing process.

Of course, none of this would be possible without Connie and Murray Elder. Love you both dearly.

Present day

Saturday, March 21st, 2020


One hour before sunrise, I dragged a red 17-foot sea kayak down to the water’s edge. My backpack was lashed to the deck in front of the cockpit. There was a light breeze coming out of the west and the only illumination was from my headlamp and sporadic lights on the shorelines. A little voice told me that this was madness of the highest degree. Sarah would not approve. No one would. I was a seasoned kayaker who’d tackled all sorts of extreme situations on the Great Lakes, but it was pitch black and I had to cross a kilometer of shipping lanes on St. Mary’s River, where freighters sailed 24/7 with no predictable timing. Thousand foot freighters didn’t move fast, but then, neither did kayaks.

Even with insulated booties, the water stung as I stepped in, breaking through a thin layer of ice at the water’s edge. I stabilized the kayak with one hand and held my paddle with the other, carefully maneuvering my legs into the cockpit, almost tipping in the process. I hadn’t slept more than an hour, and my nerves were raw with fear. My hands were shaking uncontrollably. Not from the cold, but from the terrified energy flowing through every atom of my being. What I was about to attempt was foolhardy at best, and it was turning my spine to jelly and my stomach into a constricted pit of acid. I desperately wanted to run back to our house, crawl under the covers of our bed. But what comfort would that give me? Knowing that my wife was in another bed, a hospital bed, fighting for her life.

I sat in the kayak, still holding on to a nearby rock for stability, checked my balance, rocking from side to side, feeling the kayak and water meld together, becoming one. I took a deep breath and looked up into the darkness, questioning myself once again and, in a moment of adrenaline ramped clarity, decided I couldn’t live with myself if I didn’t at least try to do everything I possibly could. As insane as this plan was, it was the only one that would allow me to get to Sarah in time.

I pushed away from the safety of shore, set my compass heading, aiming for the blinking red marker on the closest edge of the shipping lanes, and then settled into a comfortable paddle cadence.

There was no going back.


The darkness was a perfect cover, and I was running dead silent. A gentle breeze wafted the scent of seagull droppings from a nearby rock island on which towered the blinking red marker. I changed course and now targeted a white light beckoning from a beach servicing a trailer park on the Michigan side, about five-hundred meters from my position. Frigid late-March droplets slithered down my paddle on the upstroke splashing my face, heightening my focus. Despite an early thaw, patches of ice and small growlers still cluttered the river. I felt like a cat picking its way across an elegant dinner table ladened with fine crystal ware. Adrenaline bubbled through my veins, fueling each stroke. Sweat soaked the area between my shoulder blades as I crossed an invisible line demarcating the Ontario/Michigan border, gliding into the shipping lanes, into no man’s land.


I was staring at ghostly reflections on the surface of the water, lulled by the rhythm of the waves, when I felt the propeller groan of a thousand-footer. As I looked upstream, towards the bright multicolored outline of the International bridge, the deafening blare of its

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